The Forged Letter of General Lee.
THE FORGED LETTER OF GENERAL LEE.
A Paper read by Professor CHARLES A. GRAVES, of the Law School of the University of Virginia.
Nearly fifty years ago, on November 26, 1864, the New York Sun published a letter, purporting to be by General Robert E. Lee to his son, G. W. Custis Lee, with this heading and introduction:
"Private Letter From General Lee."
"The original of the following private letter from General Lee to his son was found at Arlington House, and is interesting as illustrating a phase in his character."
This is the forged letter; and as printed in the Sun, it is in these words and figures, to-wit:
"My Dear Son: I am just in the act of leaving home for New Mexico. My fine old regiment has been ordered to that distant region, and I must hasten to see that they are properly taken care of. I have but little to add in reply to your letters of March 26, 27 and 28. Your letters breathe a true spirit of frankness; they have given myself and your mother great pleasure. You must study to be frank with the world: frankness is the child of honesty and courage. Say what you mean to do on every occasion, and take it for granted you mean to do right. If a friend asks a favor, you should grant it, if it is reasonable; if not, tell him plainly why you cannot; you will wrong him and wrong yourself by equivocation of any kind. Never do a wrong thing to make a friend or keep one; the man